Back to the Future

Jocelyn Yokow

In the late 1800s, the state of Rhode Island strove to represent its effective, powerful, and centralized government in a single building. By translating these original ideals into the 21st century, the Rhode Island State House can support multiple activities while reflecting the aspirations of the state’s residents. By enhancing and magnifying existing spaces intended for public use - the entry, café, museum, gift shop, constituent services, and grounds - the site will encourage people to interact with and participate in their government, illustrate the balance of power between government and the people, and allow all Rhode Islanders to experience our shared history. A renovated basement space, a new system of access, and reimagined grounds will provide ample programming space to engage the state and local community.

An addition that wraps around the historic pedestrian entrance will provide a visible indication that all are welcome at the Rhode Island State House and on its grounds and provide dedicated space for visitor programming.  With this expanded space, the visitor programming that is currently nestled within the State House is brought to the attention of Rhode Islanders.